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V-22 Osprey IN Hollywood Movie

Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:56 pm

We are building a replica of the V-22 Osprey cockpit for a feature film. For fans of this incredible aircraft, we would like to be as true to the real aircraft as we can. If you have any of the following info, it would be very useful to us! Thank you! Thank you in advance!

1. Photos of side windows, rear cockpit cabin, cockpit ceiling and close-ups of cockpit controls and live monitors.
2. Is the V-22 more of a helicopter pilot's aircraft or an airplane pilot's? The pilot would sit on the right, right?
3. Any interior dimensions of the cockpit console panels, interior cabin, seats, etc. would be extremely useful.
4. Does anybody know if the V-22 can be operated by a single pilot?

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RE: V-22 Osprey IN Hollywood Movie

Tue Jul 21, 2009 7:00 pm

I've got a few hours in the MV-22 level-d sim out at MCAS New River, and I used to work avionics on the CH-46 that it's replacing. I've also got about 55 hours towards a private pilot's license with about 25 PIC in small C-152 and PA-128 and 38 aircraft so I was somewhat familiar with the fundamentals of flight when I went into the sim.

You should be able to buy a scale model of a V-22 and use it and it's scale drawings for a pretty good close fit for the dimensions of the flight deck. There a bunch of pics available on the internet, too.

The pilot in command sits on the left side just like a fixed wing aircraft, and each pilot has a HOTAS throttle on the left side that moves forward and back, rather than a collective stick that moves up and down as in a helicopter.

For the most part the aircraft flies like either a fixed wing or rotary winged aircraft, although one has to be careful in rotary-winged flight operating like a true rotary-winged aircraft that most of the V-22 pilots have transitioned from, because as evident by the class A in Arizona there is a limit of how much speed/energy you want to come down with because you can't bleed it off as fast as you can in a rotary-winged aircraft with longer rotors. I don't think the aircraft has been re-programmed so as to prohibit the pilot from entering into this flight envelope, I think it's just listed by NATOPS as prohibited for the pilots from entering.

The pilot controls the engine nacelles with their left thumb on the throttle. It was was pretty neat and a unique experience sitting on the end of the runway with the prop rotors tilted slightly forward, mashing the throttle full forward and after rolling down the runway in what I want to say was no more than 1,000' before getting airborne, of which at that time the IP rose the landing gear and I then mashed the nacelles full forward as fast as they would go as we accelerated up to 220 knots as fast as a fixed wing turbo prop shot out of a Navy carrier catapult!

We did a few patterns in the sim with the prop rotors tilted slightly forward (I forget the exact settings now, (40° to 45° est.) but it was similar to the photos you see of V-22's in the pattern) and did touch and go's just as if we were a fixed wing aircraft, and then we did vertical takeoffs and landing just like a rotary winged aircraft on-board LHD and small LZ's out at Camp Pendleton.

The V-22 flight deck is the greatest thing going for the aircraft compared to the CH-46E that I used to work on, for example. While it surely can readily easily be flown by just one pilot I'm not sure and I don't think it would ever be certified for single pilot use in the military. I was really surprised that the Marines don't have HUD's in the aircraft because I've flown B-73G level-d sims where we readily used the drop down HUD in the left seat of it and it was just like flying one of those F-16 simulators, pretty darned impressive how useful that is for an aircraft outside of a fighter jet or attack helicopter.

The modern flight controls were precise and easy to manipulate. When we practiced aerial refueling behind KC-130's, you would just use the beep trim with your right thumb on the control stick to make the fine-tuning necessary to catch the basket.

In fact, an Osprey pilot can turn on the autopilot and just turn the dials like a modern airliner to get the aircraft to fly heading, altitude, and speed. In fact, one way in which the Marines can counter brownout conditions when operating in sand environments is to turn on their A/P and have it via the radar altimeter transition from fixed wing flight and establish a hover, and then slowly set the aircraft down by dialing down the altitude setting.

The Osprey's A/P can control the angle of the prop rotors, so it's pretty impressive. I can't imagine how much easier it would be to fly a V-22 into the White House lawn than what it takes the current VH-3!

Hope it helps, I'm sure I'm not giving away any state secrets here!
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RE: V-22 Osprey IN Hollywood Movie

Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:45 pm

Thank you for sharing your flight sim experience on the V-22! We are actually looking more for dimensional and photo reference for building the INTERIOR cockpit. In our version of the V-22, the actor (pilot) would be filmed while he is flying the V-22, so we would like all of the interior fit-out, flight deck, etc. to be as authentic as possible. When the camera moves away from the interior of the aircraft, that's when movie magic happens and the exterior of the V-22 becomes a computer visual effect shot with moving tilt rotors and everything!

But maybe we can use some of your insight to help the actor make his actions more believable. For pilots like yourself, there's probably nothing as annoying and distracting as an actor making an obviously improper or even dangerous move while pretending to fly an aircraft. We have military technical advisors and pilots on set, but they won't necessarily know how to fly an Osprey.

The scale models that I've found don't provide much interior detail of the cockpit. There's a lot of info online on the V-22, but the scale drawing info is very dodgy. I can't design and build a cockpit based on that level of info. Photos and hard dimensions from actual V-22 cockpits are the best!

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